Two elderly ladies known what fate had in stall for them, they would have changed their plan of visiting the Franciscan Abbey at Camelot; for it is there that they would encounter doom that they had so dreaded. Pauline, in her characteristic reluctance had earlier that misty morning dragged her feet as she joined Elizabeth on the gravel road in order to board a coach. The chilly weather did not deter them either.
At exactly 7.00 am, the coach made an appearance and the two could not wait any further. Having found an unoccupied compartment, Pauline huddled in to a corner of her seat as Elizabeth curled her feet though she knew better that it was not lady-like to do so.
“It’s long since I took a trip through these magnificent woods,” remarked Pauline as the coach creaked on.
“Sure dear, am looking forward to the reception at Camelot,” added Elizabeth.
Save for the fact that the ride was occasionally bumpy, the journey progressed well enough for Pauline to fall in to a slumber. In her undisturbed repose, she dreamed of a dark cave in which she resided. It had icicles hanging from its roof and at every midnight a cry would be heard and echoes thereafter. To the religious inhabitants of the cave it ridiculously served as a call to the last prayer of the day before they retired for the night.
Finally, the coach dropped its passengers and they finally stood by the gate of the abbey which they had heard about ever since they attended school together. For some strange reason, there was no monk in sight to welcome them; not even the occasional flight of a resident bird could interrupt the grave like calmness in the compound.
After a short consultation, the two agreed to venture in to the abbey. It was a castle like building, standing on approximately half an acre of land. From the front porch, a visitor could discern an architectural masterpiece as the building was constructed using specially carved blocks and magnificent bricks. Pauline pushed the door which opened with a creak revealing a semi lit hallway. It took the intervention of Elizabeth-who drew the curtains- for them to discover that the hall way was devoid of any human presence.
Curiosity made them venture farther inwards through a narrow corridor that connected the hallway to a ballroom, or so it seemed. And it is there that two monks were found; seated in prayerful devotion. They would not talk to anyone as they were meditating but one of them with much effort and seemingly agitated by the interrupted meditation pointed towards a staircase which the ladies used to access the upper study room.
Immediately, Elizabeth and Pauline helped themselves on cakes that were lying on a nearby table, brewed some coffee and proceeded towards the right side where comfortable coaches awaited their aching bones. A quick glace at the schedule of events hung on the wall revealed that they had visited the castle during a week of prayer, fasting and meditation after a dreadful haunting of the abbey that had been experienced a week earlier.
“Had we known this, we would have postponed this trip. It seems we came at a time that spirits are haunting this place,” remarked Pauline.
To sound reassuring although inwardly she felt scared, Elizabeth dismissed the issue, “I don’t think it’s that serious. We could bee dealing with paranoid monks. Although we had planned to go back today, I suggest that we spend a night here since this is there last day of prayer, in order for us to grace the reception in the abbey tomorrow.”
Pauline agreed with her though deep down in her heart she harbored profound fear of something she could hardly tell. Soon darkness fell and they retired to early sleep. It would have been difficult for Pauline and Elizabeth to tell how long they had been sleeping before a deafening cry woke them up. It was a scream of a person who seemed to be deeply in pain. Pauline instinctively trotted after Elizabeth who had grabbed the lantern and was heading for the attic.
It is there that they encountered a sight to behold: a white staff lay on the attic floor next to a human skeleton. The skeleton roughly measured six feet and the horror brought about by its sight momentarily erased the pungent smell that later engulfed the chamber as the ladies came to their senses.
Bats took off from the attic floor adding to the confusion. Pauline passed out leaving Elizabeth. For some reason she gathered enough strength, rose from the floor, descended the attic stair way, took off through a different flight of stairs and bumped in to three frightened but determined monks who were carrying candles and chanted loudly as they cast the spells. As she was panting, she could only manage to point at the direction she had come from. The monks wasted no time. They went upwards and after a while descended with a semi conscious Pauline, the staff and skeleton. Within ten minutes, the items had been fed to the fire in the boiler room, Pauline had regained consciousness and the abbot had turned their meditative vigil in to a celebration. They profusely thanked the two ladies and prayed for their safe journey home the following day.
It is widely believed that for the better part of that century, the abbey remained a haunted place since the monks perished one by one with the whereabouts of their remains being a mystery to date.